Typically, the “playground” is thought of as a place in physical space.
Students eagerly watch the clock tick by, waiting for the glorious moment when they’re given the green light to dart out of the classroom and escape to the “playground.” When our kids are particularly well-behaved and homework isn’t stacked too high, we might reward them with a trip to the “playground,” where they get a chance to cut loose and be kids for a little while. No matter where the “playground” is located, one truth remains constant-- it’s a place where imaginations catch fire.
But, reflect on the impact that might be felt if, instead of thinking about the “playground” as a place somewhere outside of ourselves, we began approaching it as a state somewhere within…
By isolating the “playground” to specific physical spaces, we limit the boundless opportunities for imagination and growth that are unfolding around us in every waking moment. Equally as valuable to our little ones as them sliding down the jungle gym’s twisty slide is them pretending to be pancake chefs with the dirt in the frontyard garden. Approaching our day as a chance to play the game of the world teaches the powerful lessons to our kids that there are possibilities for fun and learning around every corner, boredom isn’t a thing, and one’s ability to have a good time depends on outlook and not location or circumstance.
This whole world is a playground, playfulness is a mindset, and kids look to us to set the tone. So, are you pissed and stuck in traffic on the way to school, or are you driving your kids in a spaceship that has to make frequent stops for passing asteroids?